In 2013-14, SLC played a vital role in challenging the existing business plan and feasibility study and making recommendations in relation to affordability and sustainability which were subsequently taken forward. Working with a sub-group, SLC helped to find an alternative design solutions for the centre which would be affordable and appropriate, and SLC Associate Paul Weston was commissioned to draw up new designs in keeping with the scope of the needs of the community established by the earlier work.
Now, a £400,000 funding award from sportscotland following a commitment from South Ayrshire Council to contribute £4m worth of investment to build the harbourside facility, means that residents of Girvan and South Carrick have been promised a new facility in the next financial year. The centre will contain a 25m swimming pool, soft play area, fitness gym, flexible multipurpose studio and café.
Councillor Bill McIntosh, Leader of South Ayrshire Council, said: “What fantastic news and our sincere thanks to sportscotland – and all the other funding partners – for helping us reach such a major milestone. This really does give the green light to move on full steam ahead and make our vision a reality for the people of Girvan and South Carrick.
“It has taken a long time to get here, but we’re now in a great place with an outline design and specification that can be built with the monies we have available to us. And every day we’re moving closer and closer to work getting started and the pool, gym, and soft play being available to the paying public. “Our focus now is finalising the planning application and then getting the work started, so there’s still a lot to do. However, we can’t ignore how far this project has come over the last year and my thanks to everyone who has played a part in helping achieve that.”
Andrew Sinclair, Chair of SCCL, added: “The sportscotland monies mean there really is no stopping us now! It’s taken a lot of work and effort to get here – and it’s been difficult at times – but our focus has always been on getting it right and ensuring that we can build and open a facility that we can afford, and can continue to afford for years to come.
“I’m very proud of the £1 million-plus that’s been raised by the community to support the Council investment and we will always be indebted to our funders like sportscotland who are doing nothing short of making our dreams come true. I hope the fact that we now have all the money in place will provide confidence and reassurance to those who thought this day would never come.
“That day is here – and there are many more milestone days to come as the project moves forward to provide the people of Girvan and South Carrick with the sport, leisure and culture facilities we not only need, but deserve.
“As a community, we all now have to get behind this project as that really is the only way it will be the success we all want it to be. One way to do that is to take part in our exciting competition to name the new facility – and win a year’s free membership when it opens. Details are available at www.girvanleisurecompetition.co.uk or by calling 0300 123 0900.”
Stewart Harris, Chief Executive of sportscotland said: “We are building a world class sporting system for everyone in Scotland and we view this leisure facility in Girvan as a key part of that. I am delighted that we can award this project £400,000 that will create more and better opportunities to take part in sport and physical activity.
“The Council, SCCL and the local community have all worked tirelessly and I am confident that people in the local area will reap the benefits once the build has been completed.”
The full capital funding for the new Girvan leisure and community facility comes from the following organisations:
- South Ayrshire Council – £4 million
- sportscotland – £400,000
- Scottish Government Regeneration Capital Grant Fund – £250,000
- Carrick Futures – £250,000
- Hadyard Hill Community Benefit Fund – £100,000
- ScottishPower Renewables’ Kilgallioch Wind Farm – £100,000
- The William Grant Foundation – £50,000.
Duncan Wood-Allum from SLC said: “We are thrilled to see the Girvan facility is moving ahead, and SLC is proud to have been involved in the development of what we’re sure will be a fantastic community asset with great value for the local community. We look forward to visiting the facility for ourselves when it opens.”